BoG Gold Watch Probe 'reckless' gold watch spending - AFAG to Mahama

"AFAG calls on the president to probe this matter to the core and ensure that the Ghanaian public is made aware of how their taxes are being put to use," a statement by the group has said.

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Pressure Group, the Alliance for Accountable Governance has condemned the Bank of Ghana’s justification for spending €450,000 - an equivalent of Gh¢2 million on gold watches for its retiring staff.

A statement released by the Communication Department of the Central Bank yesterday (Wednesday) explained that per the tradition of the Central Bank, they award to staff of the Bank who has served in the institution for thirty years or more.

READ ALSO: BoG justifies blowing of Gh¢2m on gold watches

“End of service benefits, as part of the conditions of service for staff, is a longstanding tradition of the Bank, an obligation the Bank has always fulfilled to boost staff morale and commitment to the goals and ideals of the institution. The award scheme has been the convention of the Bank since the 1970s.”

But a statement by the group said the move the Central Bank is “reckless” and “needless.”

It has therefore called on President John Mahama to “probe this matter to the core and ensure that the Ghanaian public is made aware of how their taxes are being put to use. Scandals of this nature cannot continue to happen and swept under the carpet within the public sector.”

Below is the full statement from the group:

At a time when unemployment rate especially among the youth keeps rising, the economy is struggling and the Ghana Cedi is one of the worst performing currency across the globe, it is unbelievable that the Bank Of Ghana would rather focus on blowing over half a million dollars of the taxpayers money on buying gold wrist watches for staff of the organization.

A report circulating on various news outlets that the Bank of Ghana decided to spend an equivalent of Ghc2 million of the taxpayer’s money on procuring 72 units of Tissot Gold Watches as part of packages for staff members’ end of service benefit is difficult to comprehend. The Alliance for Accountable Governance (AFAG) condemns this display of opulence. It is reckless and needless.

Ghana is currently in a situation where many of our fellow countrymen, young and old, are facing serious economic hardship and lack access to very basic social amenities. Yet, the leadership of Bank of Ghana chose to engage in a spendthrift expenditure of this volume to satisfy a handful of people.

AFAG calls on the president to probe this matter to the core and ensure that the Ghanaian public is made aware of how their taxes are being put to use. Scandals of this nature cannot continue to happen and swept under the carpet within the public sector.

It is very worrying that, over the past 7 years, the politics of patronage by the NDC government inevitably has rewarded the wasteful use of public resources. No one has been punished. Such Perpetuators have always been shielded from prosecution or harbored for convenience. No wonder other public institutions are emboldened to repeat same.

Mr. President the scar still remains because of the inactions of the attorney general and possibly the lack of commitment of government to prosecute.

Ghanaians forever remember the comical approach to Woyome's trial and among others Subah, Gyeeda, Asongtaba,Waterville,$4 million world cup scandal, lavish expenditure by former CHRAJ boss( over $145000 for hotel rental at Best Western), Smarty's deal.

Mr. President while some communities are wallowing in abject poverty and hoping for a KVIP or borehole just to live, another state institution with unlimited access to public resources are busily engaged in opulence. This is not fair and against the basic principle of equity.

CONCLUSION:
It is in this regard that we are calling for a probe. Failure, we will call for a mass action. AFAG next week will state clearly our next line of action but for now Mr. President the ball is in your court.

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